Transcribing a lot of interviews atm which takes me a long time. Should be back with posting soon.
A couple of things to think on:
- I have an interview that I’m working on with a housing officer. This officer said that the council they worked for was placing more and more people in Travelodges for emergency accommodation. It isn’t news that homeless families are placed in Travelodges, but it did make me wonder how much hotel chains collect these days in housing benefit/Universal Credit and if hotel chains built or set up new hotels to cash in.
- this officer said that there was concern in some council officers about councillors responding in a knee-jerk way to bad publicity about housing. If a homeless family received publicity about their housing problems, some councillors would tell staff to prioritise that case and to find the family decent local housing. If a homeless family didn’t have publicity and/or a lawyer, they wouldn’t get any such treatment and would languish for years in emergency or temporary accommodation – if they were lucky to get even that far. Backlogs of such cases piled up on officers’ desks. Variations on this theme have long been the case, of course. It was just that officers were getting mightily pissed off about it. In times of extreme housing crisis, systems that are supposed to be in place go to pieces.